An unlikely Cinderella goes shopping

If there are men reading this, you might want to get your eye-rolling and scoffing out of the way now, or better yet, go watch ESPN.  This is definitely a girly post. 

So, tomorrow I’m going to a ball.  A real, live ball, complete with masks and black tie optional.  Unfortunately, I will not have a handsome gentlemen in a tux on my arm, but I’ll be working, so in truth, even if I had one, he’d be in the way.  Or so I tell myself. 🙂

I don’t often go to balls.  In fact, it’s safe to say I never do.  I think the last one I went to was…well…probably prom, if that counts.  I’m sure you can see the problem.  No gowns in my closet, except an extremely boring one that has hung around for at least 10 years (and I’ll be damned if I can remember why I bought it).  No shoes that are anything but black, sensible or flip flops.  No sparkly jewelry.  A woeful lack of appropriate underarmor…er…wear.  And no time to scour the few stores we have. In fact, I had one night, and a four part mission: dress, underwear, jewelry, shoes.

It’s rare that I actually enjoy shopping.  Let’s be honest; fashion is not friendly to the overweight.  Oh, I know, Spanx are great, and you can read all the articles in the world about how “confidence” and “taking care of yourself” are as sexy as a size 4 body, but it simply. ain’t. true.  Clothes in stores are designed for people who are skinnier than me.  Period.

Thus, I always approach a “must buy” shopping spree with healthy trepidation.  Today, though, I had a funny feeling that it wouldn’t be as bad as usual, and to my delight, it wasn’t.  Remember how Cinderella had a beautiful dress made for her by the mice ?  I felt like I had Gus-Gus and his crew with me tonight.

The first sign that things were going to be different? I found my dress on my first trip to the fitting room.  Even better, I was only a few pounds away from being able to get the smaller size.  Excellent weight loss incentive there.   Now the dilemma – bold color or sensible and slimming black?  My normal MO is black.  So I went for the color.  I’m such a rebel.

A brief stop in the unmentionables department had me thinking of all the scenes in movies about “slimming” undergarments:  Bridget Jones and her giant panties, for example, or this classic line from Steel Magnolias:

“I haven’t left the house without lycra on my thighs since I was 14.”
“You were brought up right.”

Note to self; it’s fun to shop in the jewelry section when one is not trying to walk the sparkly/yet subtle line.  When sparkly is all you’re going for, the possibilities are endless.

I had intended to buy a long dress so I could wear flats. But the dress has a slit, so, heels it must be.  Another $100 bucks for shoes?  No thanks.  To the clearance rack! Clearance isn’t really my thing, since I can never find anything I like (hence why the shoes are on clearance, right?), but sometimes, a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.  I had a fleeting thought to buy silver shoes; after all, where would I wear silver shoes but at a ball?  Alas, there were none in my size.  Sigh.  So, I settled for some black ones, and headed to checkout.  But then…lo and behold…the salesman was marking boxes of shoes for clearance, and they just happen to be the silver version of the black shoes I was planning to buy!

That was the moment when I started to wonder if I might just pull this whole thing off.

Of course, the drive home is always about buyer’s remorse.  Should’ve gone with the black.  What will it look like when I get home and the light isn’t flattering anymore?  It’s doesn’t quite look right in the back, and no time for alterations; will my wrap cover that? What if I get laughed at for wearing a bright blue/purple dress?  Who am I to think I could look good among women who make it their life’s work to look spectacular even when walking the dog?  And so on.

Only tomorrow’s ball will tell, but for now, I’m enjoying the thought of my $15 silver shoes and successful shopping venture.  Gus-Gus and his pals did well, and I don’t have mean stepsisters to rip my dress to shreds and thus require the fairy godmother to bail me out. 

I’m kind of pysched to be going to a ball.  See you at midnight in the pumpkin coach.

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